DALLAS -- Houston followed its first loss of the season to Navy with a narrow victory against Tulsa, a three-touchdown underdog that fell inches short of tying the score in the final seconds on the road.If the 11th-ranked Cougars want to regain the dominance that carried them into the top 10, coach Tom Herman figures they have to recognize that they will get the opponents best effort. And that includes SMU on Saturday night.We are learning to be the overdog instead of the underdog, Herman said. It is interesting, you are drawing on different senses to motivate yourself. Its all pride when you are the underdog that is disrespected. There is the pride of the, `Hey, Im going to prove all of you wrong. Now its the pride of, `Hey, we have to prove everybody right.The realistic playoff chances for Houston (6-1, 3-1 American) ended with the loss to Navy. If quarterback Greg Ward Jr. and the Cougars want to rekindle those hopes, theyll need some convincing victories leading into a late-season nonconference showdown with Louisville.And SMU (2-4, 0-2) is another three-touchdown underdog.There is a little rivalry being that we are the only two teams in our conference in the state of Texas, Herman said. Theyre going to give us their best shot, and their best shot is good enough to beat us if were not hitting all our cylinders.Things to consider in the resumption of a series that Houston leads 15-3-1 since the Mustangs returned from the so-called death penalty in 1989 and lost to the Cougars 95-21:FORGET ABOUT IT: Herman says he had zero interest in news this week that the Big 12 rejected Houston and 10 other schools for possible expansion. The anti-Big 12 reaction in the state was swift, including a rebuke from Gov. Greg Abbott . Im dead serious when I tell you it consumes zero amount of my time, energy, effort or thought at all, said Herman, whose name will be prominent in high-profile coaching searches this offseason.WORKING WARD: The senior standout has more than twice as many rushing attempts as any of the Houston running backs, leading to questions of whether he is being overused. He has 105 carries for 414 yards with six touchdowns. Ward is ninth nationally at 323 yards passing per game. He has 224 attempts and a 70 percent completion rate with 11 touchdowns and five interceptions. Ive had the conversation with the offensive staff about can we win with less read plays maybe, Herman said. But if we need to win the game, well use him.SPEAKING OF OVERWORKED: The Cougars still havent had a bye, and wont until after hosting Central Florida next week. The Louisville showdown comes a Thursday after playing Tulane the preceding Saturday. And SMU is coming off a bye. Were playing football for 12 1/2 weeks straight, so its going to take its toll on their bodies, Herman said.THE FADE ROUTE: SMU stayed close for a half as a double-digit underdog against high-scoring Texas rivals Baylor and TCU. The Mustangs were even with the Bears on the road at 6-6, and trailed the Horned Frogs 6-3 at home. But Baylor, now ranked ninth, outscored SMU 34-7 after halftime for a 40-13 win. TCU pulled away for a 33-3 win after a 75-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the second half.---College Football: http://collegefootball.ap.org Pierre Garcon Super Bowl Jersey . -- In a span of seven Washington Redskins offensive plays, Justin Tuck sacked Robert Griffin III four times. Robbie Gould Super Bowl Jersey . Newcastle dominated in the early stages but City weathered the storm and then raised its game in extra time. Negredo broke the deadlock from close range after a simple move in the 99th minute before Dzeko took the ball round goalkeeper Tim Krul to seal the victory in the 105th. http://www.49ersofficialfanshop.com/deebo-samuel-jersey.html . Artturi Lehkonen, Joni Nikko and Ville Leskinen had the other goals for Finland (1-0) while Juuse Saros stopped 28 shots. Tim Robin Johnsgard had the lone goal for Norway (0-2). Jerry Rice Super Bowl Jersey . -- Jimmie Johnson held off a teammate, passed a pair of Hall of Famers, and dominated once more at Dover. Nick Mullens Super Bowl Jersey . No. 13-seeded John Isner and No. 21 Philipp Kohlschreiber were among six players who dropped out of the tournament on Tuesday, joining No. 12 seed Tommy Haas and two other players who withdrew on Monday. Just a couple of weeks back, I wrote a column in which I asked six NFL coaches and personnel men to vote on the best wide receiver in football.?Julio Jones earned five of the six first-place votes, standing above the likes of Antonio Brown, Odell Beckham Jr. and A.J. Green.This column is a similar exercise, though the position in question is running back. I set out to find the best back in football with the help of insights from coaches and personnel men, but the path to an answer was a decidedly different one.Whereas Jones skill set is one that would be tailor made for any offense -- his rare combination of size, speed, agility and explosive burst off the line suits him for any wide receiver duties -- running backs offer a broader blend. Not all successful running backs profile in the mold of Adrian Peterson, a dominant physical force who, when healthy, is at his best running north-south. Arian Foster, who recently retired,, was the ideal fit for the Texans offense he thrived in for several years because of his one-cut running style, equipped with decisive instincts and vision.ddddddddddddTheres no cookie cutter for the perfect back.Moreover, a running backs success on the field is not merely a direct result of his ability: The offensive line matters. Put any running back behind, for example, the Rams offensive line, and the results may not be so robust.Also of note is that Peterson, who has long been considered one of the games elite talents at the position, has been limited to just 31 carries so far this season because of injury.Without further ado, lets take a look at the best running back, according to folks in the league, as a rising star in Dallas gears up for a Thursday night matchup on Petersons home turf.? ' ' '